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Japan should reflect on historical problems profoundly

Editor: Li Kun 丨CCTV.com

09-02-2015 15:57 BJT

By Liu Shu, associate professor of Jilin University

The Japanese government announced on August 24 that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe would not visit China on September 3. Since Abe's attitude towards historical problems is rather sematic, whether he comes or not is meaningless.

On August 14, Abe issued a statement to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II., which showed no sincerity, and words such as "reflection", "apology" remain in name only. On August 15, a few members of Abe's cabinet visited the Yasukuni war shrine, just one day after Abe delivered his statement. Abe did not join them, but still sent a sacrificial gift to honor Japanese war criminals. 

August 15 was the day when Japan declared unconditional surrender. Some Japanese politicians paid homage at the Yasukuni Shrine where class A war criminals were consecrated, which reflected Japan's wrong attitude towards historical problems. China expressed strong dissatisfaction and resolute opposition to it.

Worshipping War criminals' memorial tablets and building Yasukuni War Museum showed Japan's distortion of historical problems, which also constitutes the core of the "Yasukuni history view" and the spiritual panacea for Japanese right-wing forces. For example, a piece of news titled Peace revives in Nanking in December 1937 covered up the truth of the Nanking Massacre and tried to shift the blame.

It is said that nearly five million people have visited Yasukuni Shrine each year, and particularly there are more and more youths going there. If Japanese youths have accepted such kind of history education, where would the future Japan go?

In essence, it is an embodiment of growing power consciousness for Japan to visit Yasukuni Shrine. The incident of Japan's "purchasing Diaoyu Island" in 2012 continues to simmer, and its security policies aim to fight against China by depending on U.S.-Japan alliance and reinforcement of self-defense. This mindset will lead Japan to induce Japanese's tendency towards war and cultivate power consciousness and militarism. 

Visiting Yasukuni Shrine is related to the un-thorough elimination of militarism after World War II. The emperor of Japan escaped from the Tokoyo trial under America's asylum.

The emperor as the symbol of recognition of Japanese culture evaded war crimes, thus some of the Japanese people would take it for granted that soldiers as the "executors" shouldn't undertake their responsibilities. This is a big obstacle for Japan to face up to history and reflect on its aggression. 

Finally, visiting Yasukuni Shrine echoes with Abe's ambiguity on historical problems in his 70th anniversary statement. The crux for Japan to deal with historical problems reflects in its language ambiguity and inconstant behavior, which shows the new generation of Japanese politicians igonoring the feelings of victimized countries and lacking a sense of historical responsibility.

In dealing with historical problems, Chinese President Xi Jinping has instructed Tokyo to strictly follow the four Sino-Japanese political documents and make sure the relationship is going to the right direction. Historical problems concern the political basis between China and Japan. It is expected that Japan can take neighboring Asian countries seriously and release positive information.


( The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com. )



Panview offers a new window of understanding the world as well as China through the views, opinions, and analysis of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.

Panview offers an alternative angle on China and the rest of the world through the analyses and opinions of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.



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